Shopping at a supermarket in Hai Ba Trung District every week, Le Trang, the resident, is used to buying MyFarm yogurt and other foodstuffs with the OCOP (One Commune, One Product) label. The certification helps her spend less time searching for high-quality products among the many products displayed in the store.
"I know the origin and quality of the product because the product packaging is printed with the city's OCOP certification logo," she told The Hanoi Times.
The MyFarm brand, owned by the BaVi Farm Milk Joint Stock Company and rated four stars since 2020, is popular with many consumers in Hanoi and other provinces. The brand is one of over 1,600 OCOP products evaluated, rated, and recognized by city authorities. This is seen as a first step towards the success of Hanoi's OCOP program, which promotes the consumption of quality products through distribution channels.
More than five years ago, the BaVi Farm Milk Joint Stock Company, located in the suburban district of Ba Vi, invested in modern machinery and equipment and purchased raw milk from local farmers for production and packaging. The closed production process helped the manufacturer to create quality products.
Currently, the company's factory, located in the district's Van Hoa commune, manufactures dairy products under the "MyFarm" brand, such as fresh pasteurized milk, yogurt, caramel, and milk cake. As part of the OCOP program, the company had ten products evaluated and rated four stars by the Hanoi People's Committee.
Director of BaVi Farm Milk Joint Stock Company Nguyen Thi Mai said after being rated by the OCOP program, the company’s products are increasingly accessible to the distribution system, supermarkets, and retail stores in Hanoi and the whole country.
Meanwhile, Van Nam Agricultural Cooperative is also making good progress in Phuc Tho District, especially since the “Van Nam banana” brand was rated three stars.
"With the three-star rating, our products have many advantages in accessing the capital's retail system and convenience stores," said Doan Van Thang, Director of the cooperative.
BaVi Farm Milk Joint Stock Company and Van Nam Agricultural Cooperative are just two of the thousands of entities that have benefited from the OCOP program launched by the city in 2019. According to local insiders, the most significant benefit is easier access to the market.
Last month, Nguyen Thi Van's family from Phao Dai Lang Street, Dong Da District, visited an OCOP fair organized by the Hanoi Rural New Construction Program Coordination Office to buy some essential products. "I am quite sure of the quality because most of the products have three or four stars," she told The Hanoi Times.
Like Van, many other customers have recognized and trusted OCOP's products. Pham Dinh Thai, a resident of Dong Anh City, said he had heard a lot about OCOP's certification. "I know it is a certificate issued by the Hanoi People's Committee, so I feel completely confident in choosing OCOP products for my family," he said.
OCOP-certified products have built consumer confidence and provided local distributors with better options to supply the market.
Nguyen Thi Diem Hang, Chairwoman of the Board of Directors of the Vietnam Organic Nutrition Food Joint Stock Company, owner of the Nutri Mart chain of stores with more than 1,000 outlets nationwide, said the OCOP certificate granted by the People's Committees of provinces and cities is one of the selection criteria for putting a product into the distribution system.
"OCOP is an integrated certification. Therefore, selecting OCOP products will help the company feel confident in supplying them to consumers, as well as save a lot of time for quality inspection and traceability," she told The Hanoi Times.
According to some representatives of local retailers, the consumer market in Hanoi is very large, but competition among retail chains or within each product group is extremely fierce. Therefore, selecting safe and quality products with the best price is a requirement for distribution businesses, and OCOP is considered one of the certifications with enough reputation to attract consumers.
Since the launch of the OCOP program in 2019, the city has determined that "product development is not based on quantity." Instead, it will focus on improving quality and expanding production to bring more fundamental value to producers, businesses, and consumers, according to Deputy Head of the Hanoi New Rural Construction Program Coordination Office Nguyen Van Chi.
He added that in 2021, the city established an interdisciplinary inspection team to supervise the operation of 41 entities with 334 OCOP products certified with three stars or higher in 18 districts and localities.
"In the coming time, Hanoi will continue to conduct inspections and supervisions at many facilities to control the production and trade of OCOP products, Chi told The Hanoi Times.
Parallel to strictly controlling the quality of OCOP products, since early this year, the Hanoi People's Committee has asked departments and sectors to organize fairs to promote these commodities.
In August, two events were held at Thong Nhat Park, Hai Ba Trung District, and the commercial center of Royal City Urban Area, Thanh Xuan District, displaying thousands of specialty products of provinces and cities across the country. The fair aims to enhance communication to identify the OCOP program and OCOP products better and promote trade and consumption.
“Through the fairs, the city expects to support and counsel OCOP product manufacturers on how to ensure the standards, procedures, and requirements, meeting the tastes of distributors and consumers,” Chi underlined.
In addition to organizing promotional events, exhibitions, and business matchmaking, the city has asked departments and localities to set up 55 points of introduction and sale of OCOP products to create conditions for manufacturers to expand distribution channels, helping consumers have easier access to quality OCOP products with clear traceability.
Director of the Hanoi Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Chu Phu My said that from now until the end of 2022, the city would organize three-to five-week events to promote the manufacturing and sale of OCOP products, in combination with conferences to connect local manufacturers with distributors for the consumption of three-star and above OCOP products in Hanoi and other provinces and cities.
The department's leader added that in 2022, the city would strive to set up another 24 OCOP showrooms in districts, towns, and cities and make OCOP a strong brand, recognized and trusted by consumers nationwide.
Vice Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Nguyen Manh Quyen underlined the development of the OCOP Program. In the coming time, Hanoi will focus on fostering the comprehensive implementation of three solutions, including supporting manufacturers to diversify their products, promoting trade linkages, expanding markets, and strictly managing and improving the quality of OCOP products.